Barb to increase size of audience panel in bid to enhance data

Barb, the Broadcasters Audience Research Board, has pledged to increase significantly the size of its audience panel, particularly in London and the Midlands.

Barb, the Broadcasters Audience Research Board, has pledged to

increase significantly the size of its audience panel, particularly in

London and the Midlands.



The total network panel, now made up of 4,500 homes across the UK, will

grow by13 per cent to 5,100 homes from January 2002 - the start date for

the new Audience Measurement Contract.



Barb said the new panel was designed to take into account the BBC’s

requirements for regional representations of the nation, as well as

helping commercial broadcasters, agencies and advertisers.



The number of homes in London and the Midlands are to increase in each

region from 780 to 850.



Barb has predicted that the extended panel will improve the efficiency

of its sample audience by around 18 per cent.



The decision was taken as a result of talks with major broadcasters, the

Institute of Practitioners in Advertising and the Incorporated Society

of British Advertisers, who all agreed on the panel size for the new

contract.



Tony Wearn, deputy director at Barb, said: ’A larger sample of people

will produce more robust data. Although we will start building the panel

from April, it’s such a long process that data will not be available

until 2002.’